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Full text of "Poland Russia and Great Britain 1941-1945"

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" It was a step taken not only to give assistance to an Ally of the Allies ,
but for the idea of freedom,, which above all, and in spite of everything, is
still the aim of this war. The fault does not lie with the soldier of the
Home Army or with Poland, that the possibility of concord, of a good
neighbourly common life, grounded in a common fight has been frustrated."
The Polish Government, in an explanatory statement, emphasised the
achievements of the Home Army in Poland and the Polish Forces abroad :
" The Polish armed forces abroad^ fought by the side of our Allies on all
fronts. Narvik, the Vosges, the Maginot Line3 Tobruk, Monte Cassino,
Ancona, Falaise. Breda, Anihem, all these places have been linked forever
to our name and to our banners by the blood and sweat of Polish soldiers.
Five and a half years of uninterrupted warfare by the Polish Air Force ;
the Battle of Britain and hundreds of raids on France, Belgium, Holland^
Norway, Germany, as well as other missions j five and a half years of con-
stant fighting by the Polish Navy and the heavy and exacting work of the
Merchant Marine—this represents a part of the Polish share in the war
effort of the United Nations.
" The Home Army and the Polish people at home bore their share in the
continuous struggle against the enemy ^ shirking no suffering or sacrifice.
Over five million Polish citizens, one-sixth of the total population^ have
lost their lives. Warsaw has been almost completely destroyed. Hundreds
of towns and villages have been laid waste and the cultural achievements
of centuries have been destroyed by the invader. Yet the Polish nation
did not succumb ; it has never ceased to fight, nor did it lose its faith in the
ideals of the freedom of nations and the dignity of human beings.
" Since the time it was formed in 1939, the Home Army, which comprised
250,000 men, carried on continual sabotage and other operations against
the armed forces, administration, and communications of the enemy.
"As the front line advanced through Polish territory, the Home Army
took up an open fight against the Germans . . . Battles for Wilno, Volyn,
Vistula in the Sandomierz and Radom area . . . The final battle of the Home
Army, the Warsaw rising, which lasted for sixty-three days3 tied up a large
part of the German forces and paralysed the communication lines of the
German 2nd Army with its supply bases . . . The Home Army participated
in the battles of Cracow, Czestochowa and Piotrkow. Each month
hundreds of encounters with the foe were made by the Home Army. This
great effort of the Home Army was rendered possible only through the
whole-hearted and self-sacrificing support of all classes of the Polish
" Finally, the Home Army carried out valuable intelligence work for the
Allies behind the entire Eastern Front and in Germany itself. This
continuous effort was crowned with great results. Among other things,
it is to the Home Army that the Allies are indebted for their timely informa-
tion about fiying bombs.
" The work of the Home Army was rendered extremely difficult when,
after taking advantage of its aid, the advancing Soviet Armies proceeded
to disarm Polish units, to imprison or deport the soldiers and, in some cases^
even to shoot Polish officers.
" The ashes of Polish towns and villages and the countless battle-fields
on which rest the millions of men, women and children who have fallen for
their country, testify that there was in Poland not the faintest shadow of
treason,, hesitation or doubt regarding the great principles with which the
whole civilised world is fighting barbarism. Thanks to the heroic effort
and the sacrifices of the Home Army and to its brave and proud conduct in